How Much Time Does Data Migration Take?

It’s a fact: sooner or later successful businesses grow and it means drastic changes in the workload organization. It’s connected with the growth of their customer base and the number of customer records. As a result, companies have to move the backlog of data to a more effective help desk platform in order to provide better service for a large number of customers.

But how long would this process take? And what are the methods of doing so without affecting the current workflow much?

First of all, you should know from the very beginning that data migration doesn’t take minutes or even hours. This process is time-consuming and to some extent unpredictable. No one can say accurately what exact time you’ll have to spend on moving your old records. However, there are several factors that can affect this time, and approximately assess it, so you know what to expect.

Factors influencing data migration time

1. The amount of data being transferred.

Usually, there are no broad opportunities to change the number of records a company wants to migrate. Mainly because most of them are important to continue working with the customers on the future help desk. A few records may be left behind, however, it doesn’t make a drastic change. If the company decided on data migration, then it wants to have most of the customer support data on the new help desk.

2. The structure of the current and future help desks.

This one is also very important, especially when choosing the target platform. It’s easier to migrate to a help desk with a similar data organization structure. So, if companies want to save some time, it’s always better to choose the help desk which is the most alike to the current one.

3. The extent to which the data will be transformed during the transition.

The third factor is closely related to the previous one. It’s because the more similar are the target and the current help desks, the fewer changes the IT team has to make to the records during the migration.

Sometimes companies still want to change something in the data structure, which requires additional mapping, so the process may take longer in this case.

4. The occurrence of any errors during the process.

No one is secure from errors that can arise during or after data migration. Of course, you can be the most prepared and check everything thousands of times, but there are hidden system mistakes or other problems that can become visible later. The same, some of them may be insignificant and some can influence the whole transfer. So, they obviously influence the time your data migration will take, too.

5. The way you choose for data migration.

One of the most significant parts of data migration is usually choosing a way you will move this data. This factor is one of the most significant in terms of determining the time that data transition will take. So, better choose wisely.

Taking all these into consideration, the process can approximately take from a few days to several months. Yes, data migration cannot happen in a moment, even when your records are completely prepared.

You may also like: "How to prepare your records for data migration"

And now, we will go on to the most influential factor - the way you choose for your migration. We will discuss the most popular of them and the peculiarities that will help you essentially shorten your data migration time. Now, let’s start off.

What are your options?

So, here are the main options you may consider when choosing a way of data transition:

1. Manually building a script for migration yourself.
2. Or using a tool specifically made for this purpose.

Now, let’s compare them and decide which will be more efficient, time-saving, and cost-effective for your company.

The comparison of manual and automatic data migration


No matter how you slice it, the coding experience is very important in such a case. And even though you may have an in-house IT team, it still doesn’t mean they will comply with such a task easily and in the right way. They can be the best professionals in the world. But if they don’t have expertise in data migration exactly, it causes delays.

The inexperienced team will spend days and weeks investigating the API, figure out what data is possible to move, and how to change it. Then, they will have to test everything thousands of times to make sure everything goes right. As a result, your IT team will waste their precious time on this issue instead of working on important tasks that can appear throughout the company’s workflow.

Using a professional automated migration service, on the other hand, means avoiding such a problem. So, in terms of experience, it is much better than using your own efforts.

Automated data migration is time-saving and foolproof, so why take risks? Book a call with our team and get guided through the process.

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Professionalism and Responsibility

If you don’t want to use your own team, it’s possible to hire someone from a service like Upwork. Everything seems perfect - you connect with the developer and get all the manual work done for some amount of money. What can go wrong?

Usually, people signed up on services like this are professionals and can help solve your problem effectively and quickly. But what if they don’t? Maybe they are not much experienced but hope to figure out the migration quickly during the process.

What about security? If you don’t sign the contract with this person, you can’t be sure of the quality of the work done. It’s not quite safe to trust the most valuable part of your customer support workflow into the hands of a random person unless you sign a contract with them.

Okay, let’s imagine the Upwork person is a great professional and does his/her work excellent. Now imagine the salary he/she would ask for. Are you ready to spend such amount of money?

You see, using an automated service like Help Desk Migration is more secure and guarantees better results. We are responsible for all the actions we take with your data. As to the security, all the services we provide are listed in our SLA. Moreover, our tech engineers developed a code for automatic data migration themselves, so as the company itself is already working with data migration for 4 years. So, you take no risks when choosing our automated data migration tool.


It may seem that doing everything yourself or with your personal IT team is completely free. However, at each next step you take, you will notice that there is a new bill or feature needs to be paid off. Don’t forget that your team’s or your own time is also worth the money.

As mentioned before, when you concentrate only on data transfer, you don't spend enough time on other important issues. Which is also a loss of your personal resources.

Using an automated tool, you can run the migration and work on your specific company issues simultaneously.

Coding Peculiarities

Referring to one of the previous points, when you migrate alone (and the first time), you don’t have a prepared script that will help you migrate all at once. However, when you use our automated migration tool, you get a ready-to-use script which was already tested by thousands of customers.

Of course, there is a possibility that some emergency situations or mistakes will occur during the migration even with a prepared code. However, the professional who has built it for you can tell why exactly this or that issue happened and how it can be solved.

Vendor’s input

Not all vendors have a well-documented API. First of all, it depends on the extent to which your current platform is interested in providing extra facilities for their API token.

For instance, enterprises like Freshdesk or Zendesk have good documentation for their API tokens and the opportunities for its usage. Having thousands of customers, they provide better API Docs to enable extended abilities of its usage.

But if your vendor doesn’t provide any opportunities for the API token, you will have limited data migration methods. In this case, you won’t be able to move some kinds of data with the code written basing on such an API token. For example, the token can lack methods for migration date of ticket creation or its attachments.

The only way out in this case is to contact your vendor to get access to these methods. And you will spend a lot of time anyway, especially when it comes to the company’s response. You want to stop using their services and start paying to another vendor. So, why would they be in a hurry to help you get what you want?

Summing Up

As you see the time frames of both manual and automatic data migration are dependant on a number of factors. You can certainly make some changes and significantly shorten the migration process or vice versa, completely slow it down. So, thoroughly think through your data migration and make a decision that will be the most effective and convenient for your company.

We believe that automated data migration is a better option for companies looking to move their records to a new help desk. If you are ready to start moving your customer support records to a new platform, Help Desk Migration service is always there for you. Just set up a Free Demo on our website or contact us in case of additional questions.

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